Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) Sees Applauses From SEIA and US Energy Department

published: 2014-05-23 16:57 | editor: | category: News

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) officially announced the “SunShot” program which awards US$10 million to six new research and development projects to advance and develop concentrating solar power (CSP) technologies. This determination received applause from Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

In a new report “2014: The Year of Concentrating Solar Power” released by DOE, it highlights five utility-scale CSP plants in the U.S. that have already started generating power. Rhone Resch, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), afterward released a review of DOC’s report and called 2014 a “significant milestone in the history of American solar energy.”

An Example of concentrating solar power plant (Photo credit: Sandia National Laboratories)

“We applaud the Department of Energy (DOE) for its recognition of this important technology and for the Administration’s continued commitment to solar energy. Last year, the U.S. installed 410MW of CSP, increasing total CSP capacity by more than 80%,” Resch commented in his review. “As this report details, we can expect even more growth in 2014. The five CSP plants profiled in this report, which are expected to all be online by the end of the year, represent 1.252GW of solar capacity – enough to power 427,000 average American homes. As states gear up to reduce carbon emissions, CSP will play a huge role in producing more clean, renewable energy to power America.”

The US$10 million R&D projects implemented by DOE will help expand thermochemical energy storage systems in order to create more efficient energy storage systems while also using less storage material, says PV Tech. Researchers from universities, laboratories and research firms will be separated into six teams and will test multiple chemical processes for CSP energy storage to develop more advanced technology.

“By improving energy storage technologies for concentrating solar power systems, we can enhance our ability to provide clean and reliable solar power, even when the sun is not shining,” addressed Ernest Moniz, the U.S. Secretary of Energy.

Resch additionally applauded the SunShop program in his review, explaining that smart public policies have already helped to create 143,000 American jobs in the solar industry and have contributed a lot to domestic economy. Innovations and investments are also spurred by the previous policies and programs.

“Solar is the fastest-growing source of renewable energy in America, accounting for nearly 30% of new energy capacity in 2013, and we are pleased to join DOE in celebrating what is sure to be another record-setting year – with concentrating solar power playing an important part,” concluded Resch.

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